Troubleshooting RFID Solutions

Posted by on Feb 18, 2015 7:25:00 PM

rfid_in_retail

You may have recently implemented RFID in your business or perhaps you've used RFID for quite some time, but your system is not operating the way you need it to. There are several reasons why your RFID tags may not be reading, here is a list of possible errors or complications that your RFID system could be experiencing: 

  • Tag falls off item - make sure to check your item for an intact tag
  • Tag is damaged: physical stress can impact the antenna, chip, or internal connection
  • RF (radio frequency) interference prevents effective interaction between the tag and reader. Both metal and water can be very disruptive, and since the human body is primarily water, tags close to the body can be effectively shielded
  • Failure to implement effective scanning protocol. Most retail implementations use handheld readers, which require users to follow a disciplined procedure to get close enough to the tags for effective reading given sources of RF interference in the reading environment
  • Failure to integrate reads into the asset management process. For example, if the read indicates that an item is out of stock but no replenishment action is taken, the system fails to achieve its objective. 
  • The spectrum is limited (especially bad in ETSI jurisdictions.)  If the density of readers is too high, aggregate performance degrades, significantly, perhaps to the point of unusability.  This happens even when the readers are configured for dense reader mode operation. 
Like all technology RFID is not perfect, follow these guidelines to make sure that your RFID tags are working properly. If the none of the above problems apply to your scenario you may want to contact an RFID specialist. 

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